I left Louvre Abu Dhabi and headed to the Sheikh Zayed Mosque. This is also one of Abu Dhabi’s most famous tourist spots, but once you get there, you’ll find a magnificent looking chapel! Especially, the illumination at night is beautiful, and it’s worth seeing!
However, the entrance fee is free! I would like to report the details of the Sheikh Zayed Mosque, from the entrance method to the inside.
- 1 Access is by bus or taxi
- 2 enter through a glass-walled building
- 3 Entrance hall and admission ticket
- 4 Shoes are allowed inside the mosque!
- 5 follow a route
- 6 The mosque with beautiful sunset is really nice!
- 7 The chandelier in the chapel is beautiful!
- 8 The illumination at night is beautiful!
- 9 I definitely recommend it at night!
Access is by bus or taxi
The Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi, UAE. It’s in the southeast corner of Abu Dhabi, at the edge of the island.
In addition to a taxi, the cheap and convenient way is by bus. From Central Bus Terminal, take bus number 94 for about 40 minutes to the bus stop on the mosque grounds, which is convenient!
It is a concern that the number of buses is only 30 minutes, but it is attractive that you can use it with only 2DH! For route buses, see the article here for details → Buses in Abu Dhabi require an IC card! Detailed route map and how to ride!
enter through a glass-walled building
This time I arrived at the mosque by bus, but the parking lot on the south side of the mosque building was unloaded. There is a large parking lot where dozens of large buses stop, and it seems to be an entrance for tourists only.
There is a beautiful street lined with trees from here to the mosque. I thought the entrance of the mosque was …, but there was a barricade ahead and I couldn’t get close to the mosque.
The entrance for tourists is this round glass building. It’s right next to the main gate where buses and taxis come in, but tourists enter from here and go through an underground passage to the mosque.
The dress code is displayed next to the entrance. The staff was keeping a close eye on them, but if you are a man, you can wear a shirt with a shoulder and long pants with a pattern (The crispy wear I was wearing was also OK!).
Women need to wear a hijab, and if they don’t have a scarf, they can rent it inside.
Entrance hall and admission ticket
Enter the blue spherical building and take the escalator down to the basement to enter the entrance hall. It has an information counter, toilet, gift shop and entrance to the mosque.
Admission to the Shakespeare Mosque is free! However, each person has to get their own ticket, and they issue it by operating the ticket machine.
The ticketing machine has a touch panel and you fill in the necessary information. You do not need to enter a personal name.
- NATIONALITY … Nationality
- GENDER … Gender (Male…Male/Female … Female)
- AGE GROUP … Age Group
- Select RESIDENT OR TOURIST … TOURIST
- EMIRATES … Where to stay in UAE
- WITH A TOUR OPERATOR … No for personal visits
Finally, tap “SUBMIT TO …” and you’ll see a ticket with a QR code at the bottom. Free admission means you don’t have to go through any formalities to get in, …, but this is the kind of statistics that are important.
At the entrance, baggage is checked first. They didn’t point out anything about bringing in a backpack, and there were some people who had a bigger bag besides me, so I don’t think you need to worry about it like a museum.
After the security check, I went straight down the long aisle toward the mosque. It is close to 500 meters to the mosque, but it is easy because there is a moving walkway.
Shoes are allowed inside the mosque!
When you go out from the underground passage, a white castle appears in front of you! There is no time limit to enter this mosque and you can go sightseeing freely.
I took it from the front, and it is a very beautiful mosque with symmetry! It was completed in 2007, but probably because it is in an area where there is little rain, the roof is completely white with no darkening!
If you’re looking for an Islamic mosque, take off your shoes before entering.
According to the research in advance, there was a word of mouth saying that you leave your shoes in the shoe cupboard and enter, but it seems that you can enter with your shoes on.
follow a route
Let’s go to the mosque from the big entrance in the center. It is a free tour, but you will follow the route.
Inside the keyhole-like entrance is a hall with a high ceiling, from which you can see the inside of the dome roof. There is no stained glass like a Christian church, but the detailed decoration is really wonderful!
As for the route ahead, you first go around the corridor surrounding the courtyard for half a circle, and then visit the chapel. The corridor is partitioned and you cannot enter the courtyard.
However, you can go out to the courtyard only a part of the place where “Photo Stop” is written. Photo Stop near the entrance is full of people, but if you go to a place a little far away, it’s empty, so you can take as many photos as you want!
The mosque with beautiful sunset is really nice!
The white mosque in the setting sun and the blue sky is very nice! It’s not that big in the photos, but it’s so big when you actually see it that people on the other side of the corridor look incredibly small.
The sprawling courtyard, measured by Google satellite, measures 115 by 145 meters. Tourists are not allowed to enter at all, but on the other hand, it may be good because you can take a mysterious picture of nobody.
The interior of the corridor is also unique! There are columns with strange decorations like palm trees and pineapples. According to the document, there are more than 1,000 of these pillars.
Also, the corridor was lit up around 18 PM! If the sun goes down further after this, it will have a good atmosphere, but I will see how it goes later!
The chandelier in the chapel is beautiful!
After about half way around the corridor, you will enter the building where the chapel is. There is no ticket check or baggage check, and you can go on with your shoes from here.
There’s a big hall up ahead. The wall is painted with ivy patterns on the floor of the courtyard, and the dome-shaped ceiling is a chandelier you’ve never seen before!
What a novel design that looks like a flower stalk! Depending on how you look at it, it looks like a laser beam coming out of the tip, which is vulgar or …
And beyond this hall is this vast chapel. The Persian carpet is the largest in the world, and it is a magnificent sight! According to the documents, 7000 people can enter at one time.
The highlight is this chandelier! It’s breathtaking beauty … No, it’s so powerful that I even feel scared. The novel and mysterious design is amazing! This kind of idea is hard to come up with.
The chandelier measures 10 meters in diameter, 15 meters in height, and weighs a whopping 9 tons. It is for 2 trucks.
The flower pattern on the inner wall is also nice! If you are a Muslim, you will want to pray in a place like this someday.
The illumination at night is beautiful!
When you get out of the chapel, it gets completely dark and the atmosphere is full of night view! At the end of the tour route, you pass outside of the corridor and go back to the entrance.
The time is 19 o’clock, and the number of people walking in the cloister will decrease considerably around this time. It’s the opposite of Burj Khalifa in Dubai where people increase after dark.
I went back to the entrance and looked into the courtyard again from the corridor, and it was so beautiful that it was lit up! The floor reflects like a mirror and the whole mosque looks like it is floating.
The pale light seen through the corridor is also delicious and good! The mosque in the evening is good, but the beauty of the night is different!
I definitely recommend it at night!
So I went to the Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi and the night illumination was absolutely beautiful! If you visit from the evening like this time, I recommend you to see both day and night!
According to the mosque’s website, it takes 45 minutes. They may guide you to places you can’t usually enter.
If you are interested, you should ask at the information counter.
Shakespeare Mosque business hours
- Saturday – Thursday: 9:00 ~ 22:00
- Friday: 16:30 ~ 22:00
- *Last admission is 30 minutes before closing, 14: 00 during Ramadan (Friday off)